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Home > Medical Examination > How stringent are pilot's medical examination?
How stringent are pilot's medical examination?
Pilot Career - Medical Examination
Tuesday, 11 December 2007 21:40

How stringent are pilot's medical?

Introduction

Pilots below the age of 40 years are checked annually whereas those above are checked six monthly. Medical standards and certification are stringent. Their eyes, ear, nose, throat, equilibrium, mental, neurological, cardiovascular and general medical conditions are checked by Federal Air Surgeon or aviation trained doctors. 

As long as a pilot is certified to be medically fit, he can continue to fly internationally up to the age of 65 years in the US, Australia and other ICAO member countries.  This limit is not fixed worldwide for the retirement age for Captains can vary from country to country. In Germany and UK, pilots by law retires at 55 years.

A brief summary (see FAA for the full details) of the details are as follows:-

Eye

Distant visual acuity of 20/20 or better in each eye separately with or without glasses

Near vision of 20/40 or better, with or without glasses

Not color blind

General condition of the eyes meets the standard for issuance of the certificate.

Ear, Nose, Throat and Equilibrium

Able to hear a conversational voice in a quiet room using both ears at a distance of 6 feet.

Score at least 70 % in the audiometric speech discrimination test

Middle or internal ear, nose, oral cavity does not interfere with the clear and effective speech communication.

No decease or condition that may affect vertigo and disturbance of equilibrium.

Mental

No personality or mental disorder

No substance (such as alcohol, sedatives or psychoactive drugs) dependence

Neurological

No epilepsy

Cardiovascular

Generally, no history of heart attack

A pilot can fly again after bypass surgery but only if a heart attack has not already occurred.

A pilot must retire after he or she has a heart attack.

General Medical Condition

No medical history of diabetes

No medical defect or limitation that the Federal Air Surgeon finds him unable to safely perform the duties of a pilot.

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Comments (19)

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hi
what about people who are slightly overweight but doesn't have any health problems?can they become an airline pilot? does this factor going to effect the interview process?
anonymous , 01 Mar, 2009
reply , Low-rated comment [Show]
....nervous...
going for an interview in two days time...smilies/cry.gif and am a bit nervous but thanks to the information at least am somehow into what to expect....wish me luck!!!!!!!!!
cpt.muchesia , 04 Jul, 2009
hi.
what about people who has smoking before but now stop it....can they pass the medical examination???
Jun , 05 Aug, 2009
"clear and effective speech communication"
I find it amusing that you say "Middle or internal ear, nose, oral cavity does not interfere with the clear and effective speech communication"... mainly because you should listen to the pilots on flights I flew on. You could hardly make out a word of what they are saying sometimes.

But then again, it's not just the pilots, the announcers at airports do that as well when they announce arrivals, departures or call passenger names. I can never make out what they are saying. No, I don't have hearing problems..
Abel , 06 Aug, 2009
Body Size
hi Captain Lim, I just wanted know if i am slim can I still be an airline pilot?smilies/grin.gif
Brian , 18 Nov, 2009
Help!!..
Hi capt..
I have warts in my... Can i still pass the medical check up?smilies/sad.gif
Lefty , 16 Jan, 2010
...
hi captail lim.
Im 16 years old and i want to become a pilot. I need your help to learn about the necessities required, educationally. I know that i have a long life ahead of me but, i really love to become a pilot. Thankyou
suhail , 21 Feb, 2010
help...
I get migraines. I have medication that makes it go away within half an hour and before any of the symptoms get bad. I can still do my daily tasks when I get them, but not when they become bad and that's only when I don't take the meds.

Can I still be an airline pilot?
pbcmbeez2 , 13 Jun, 2010
Soulflya
My eyez r always red, i only drink water n other cold substances. Am a sex addict...
Cmon guys think da most nb part is da latst part. All up to doc! you cant be stopped from flying unless you put anyones life, including you, in danger! so u cn b a pilot if u fat, thin, have decaying teeth... Not sure about 3 fingers and chronic migrane....
Soulflya , 03 Jul, 2010
...
i have been smoking for 4 years..will it affect medical test..
dashviin , 30 Aug, 2011
Smoking , Low-rated comment [Show]
Elik
Can I pass with a hemorrhoids of 3rd degree without bleeding and pain?
El , 22 Jan, 2012
Captain
smokers will not pass a medical, hemorrhoids will bleed and be very painful. enuff said.
Caveman , 23 Jan, 2012
...
Will childhood asthma without recurring more 15years affect the medical examination
joh , 25 Jul, 2012
Medical Status
Captain Lim ,Can a Pes C status with knee operation before, still become a pilot?
? , 27 Dec, 2012
mr
Hi captain im joseph thonga from south africa, I am willing to found out wether it possible if someone is having ALS lung disease to pass the medical eximanation, pleas answeer me as soon as you can course next of next week im going to the selection process
joseph Thonga , 23 Feb, 2013
some informations needed
Hello sir
Im a student who just recently completed his high school and now i wish to join a university for pilot formation but i have no idea about the procedures of applying and the test to be done before
could someone please help
Thanks
ANIKET , 07 Feb, 2015
low weight
hello sir im saichran from hyderabad ..i was low weight .does it occurs any problem in trainning . i did not have any habits like drinking and smoking
saichranrao , 26 Mar, 2015

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